The Evergreen Players creates professional quality theater to inspire, engage, and entertain. Evergreen Players' Drama Camp and EP Studio One provides aspiring theater artists the opportunity to develop their skills and talents under the guidance of professionals from within a professional theatre environment.
Evergreen Players (EP) began in 1950 as a group of friends gathering in each others' homes to read plays aloud. The group had a passion for live theater, which was then inaccessible in the mountain communities. By 1953, EP performed four plays a year in various venues throughout Evergreen. The group was committed to producing live theater in Evergreen. In 1968, they founded The Little Log Theater. As theater needs expanded, EP established a performing home at CenterStage in Evergreen, a theater they now share with the Evergreen Chorale and the Evergreen Children's Chorale. A volunteer board of directors governs the organization. Part-time contract staff includes house and volunteer managers, a productionpublic relationsmarketing development manager and a drama camp director.
Most years since 1998, EP has entered the Colorado Community Theater Coalition's (CCTC) annual Theater Festival. In 2001, EP's production of "All in the Timing" took first place at regionals and went on to the national festival in Harrisburg, PA. In 2003, "The Trip to Bountiful" won six of eight major state awards, including Best Production, Best Director and People's Choice awards. In 2006, "Brilliant Traces" won numerous major awards, including Best Actress and Second Place overall for Best Production. In 2010, EP's production of "Parallel Lives" won five awards at the CCTC Festival: Best Show, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Costume Design and the All State Acting Award; and in 2011 won six awards at the Regional AACT Theater Festival: Best Production, Best Director, Best Actress, Outstanding Set Design, Outstanding Ensemble, and Best Tech Team; and was nominated for Best Actress and Best Ensemble at the National AACT Festival.
Every year, EP involves skilled amateur actors and directors, and a cadre of volunteers from all ages and walks of life. For all participants there are few if any other opportunities that offer such a concentrated blend of learning and performing in a single setting. Recently, EP has added new audiences through short runs of different types of productions such as A Christmas Carol, Love Letters and EP's most recent innovation, Evergreen Players Improvisational Comedy (EPiC).
Each summer our drama camp provides the opportunity for 130 youth, ages 5-18, to attend workshops, help create and perform original plays, and participate in improvisational theater shows. Since 2000, over 2,000 children have attended, gaining confidence while learning leadership and teamwork skills. Evergreen Players has added new audiences through productions such as Evergreen Players' Improvisational Comedy (EPiC), a world premiere of "Psalm of Purgation" by Colorado Playwright Scott Gibson, Monty Python's "Spamalot," "Broadway Our Way," "Growing Up Broadway," and special preview performances for community organizations such as the Evergreen Chamber and Evergreen Rotary. Evergreen Players has garnered a number of awards, including the following: • In March 2019, John Davis was elected as a Fellow to the American Association of Community Theatre (AACT). This is quite an honor, with only a handful of theater professionals chosen every other year. "AACT Fellow" is bestowed for life upon members of AACT who, over a period of years, have made significant contributions to the idea and ideal of community theater. • In March 2018, Kathleen Davis, a long-time board member, received an outstanding volunteer award from the American Association of Community Theatre celebrating her 51 years of committed service to Evergreen Players. • Evergreen Players was nominated for 2015 Nonprofit of the Year by the Evergreen Chamber. • The cast of our 2015 summer production of "Forbidden Broadway" was nominated for Best Small Ensemble by BroadwayWorld.com. • "Apartment 3A" (March 2014) was selected to move on to the Colorado Theater Festival's regional competition
epic: evergreen players improv comedy
By Kristina Hall, Colorado Serenity, Jan 1, 2013
You've read my gushing accolades about EPiC and I'll gush again. This comedy improv show will knock your socks off. They're really that good. Sadly, they only perform these completely original, unscripted comedy shows twice a year. If you've never seen improv, you're in for a treat. They take audience suggestions and blend them into games, like Family Dinner, Box of Death, and Interrogation. Bring your favorite people and be prepared to laugh in a very embarrassing way. It's rated PG-13. EPiC: Improv Comedy Directed by Scott Ogle.
By Sara Miller, Jul 9, 2013
Evergreen's musical theater community has certainly had success with the 1960s. Last year the Evergreen Players presented "Hair" as the summer musical to kick off Arts Alive week. This year, we do the Twist and the Mashed Potato even further back in time in the early 1960s in the Players' production of "Hairspray."
"Hairspray" was written by John Waters and is said to have been semi-autobiographical about his time growing up in Baltimore. On the face of it, a musical about overcoming racial discrimination and prejudice does not sound like it would be a barrel of laughs. However, just a few seconds into "Hairspray," and any doubts about whether it could work are blown away. The show is loud, colorful and hilarious, while still portraying 1962's politically charged fight for civil rights with a backdrop of campy bubblegum pop.
The story takes place in 1962, when proudly plump Tracy Turnblad (Bailey Walton) wants to win a spot as a dancer on the Corny Collins TV show, to make every day "Negro Day" - the one day a month blacks are allowed on the show - and to win the heart of Elvis knock-off Link Larkin (Patrick May). Tracy and some of her fellow dancers can't understand why the black kids aren't allowed to star on the TV show, and they team up to overthrow the old establishment and introduce their funky dance moves to the masses. The Players' cast of 28 is will have the theater buzzing with youthful energy. Many of the cast members are new to the Players' stage and are excited to share their talents in Evergreen. The backstage "cast" is as strong as the onstage talent - and backstage support is definitely a family affair. The show is directed by Brenda Billings, daughter of P.K. Worley, a patriarch of Evergreen theater. Brenda's only brother, Tag, is the show's assistant music director and plays the drums in the show's live orchestra. Tag's wife, Alann Worley, is the show's choreographer. Brenda's daughters also play key roles in the show. Jacquie Jo Billings plays Penny Pingleton, Jessica Billings Barnette is the assistant director, and Jamie Billings is Brenda's directorial understudy. Whether related by blood or simply a love of theater, the cast, crew and audiences of "Hairspray" become part of the Evergreen Players family. And "Hairspray" is a true American fairy tale to be enjoyed with family. It's not every day that the fat girl gets her prince while advancing the cause of social justice, and does it all while doing the Watusi or The Pony through the streets of Baltimore.
A Christmas Carol
By Kristina Hall, Colorado Serenity, Dec 1, 2012
Some things bear repeating, especially during the holidays. We're fond of old ornaments and decorations we've had for decades; we love singing songs we learned as kids; we love baking treats from recipes handed down through generations, and we also love (mostly) spending time with people we've known for years. It's traditional. It's only fitting to enjoy a staged reading of a holiday favorite, A Christmas Carol, presented by our distinguished local theater group, Evergreen Players.
Improv Troupe Brings Epic Laughs to Evergreen (Sara Miller, Canyon Courier, August 18, 2010)
The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) (Fr. Patrick Dorn, July 27, 2010)
Evergreen Players is currently presenting "Urinetown: The Musical" at CenterStage, and it's a fine production, filled to overflowing with excellent performances by the leads and ensemble, astute direction by John Thornberry, and a rebellious, in-your-face attitude, without becoming caustic or unpleasant. Director John Thornberry and music director Travis Yamamoto make the most of the talented cast and rustic setting. It is to Evergreen Players' credit that they are willing to take on a show that intends to make audiences squirm in their seats, and they more than earn the applause and appreciation of the audience for a job well done.
Shakespeare Abridged (Karen Groves, Your Hub, March 28, 2010)
If you missed the Evergreen Players production of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) two years ago, now is your chance to make up for it. If you miss it this time around, you're cheating yourself out of a raucous evening (or afternoon) of laughs. It's hilarious. The acting ensemble of Matt Bacchus, Len Mattheo and Bruce Montgomery romps across the stage in a furious pace in this comical interpretation of the Bard's plays and, ever so briefly, his sonnets, which are supposedly scribbled on an index card in tiny script that's impossible to read. The director Scott Ogle admits in his notes that he and the trio are pals having a good time. With the audience as onlooker, it's contagious, as their alternating silliness and unabashed good timing never lets up.
Parallel Lives: Sketch Comedy Takes Over Evergreen (Deb Flomberg, Denver Theater Examiner, January 21, 2010)
Directed by Len Matheo, Parallel Lives is a fun example of both the positives and negatives of sketch comedy. The mere fact that this production is funny and entertaining is due to the talents of its two actresses - Lisa DeCaro and Gail Montgomery. The two powerhouse actresses tackle each role with a beguiling energy and enthusiasm that is simply contagious. Each character is distinctly different from the others and the actresses are 100% committed to bringing the audience in on the ride.
In March 2011, the Evergreen Players' production of "Parallel Lives" took top honors at the American Association of Community Theatre (AACT) Regional Theater Festival in Fort Collins, Colorado. "Parallel Lives" written by Kathy Najimy and Mo Gaffney and performed by Lisa DeCaro and Gail Montgomery took awards for:
* Best Production: Parallel Lives, Evergreen Players
* Best Director: Len Matheo
* Best Actress (Lisa DeCaro and Gail Montgomery)
* Outstanding Set Design: Peggy Morgan Stenmark
* Outstanding Ensemble
* Best Tech Team.
In June 2011, "Parallel Lives" went on to the National AACT Festival in Rochester, New York. AACTFest11 is a national theatre event that includes only the best community theatre productions from across the Country and the U.S. Armed Services. EP raised over $18,000 using social networking to fund this trip to Rochester. Over 600 people participated in this AACT flagship event, where Parallel Lives was nominated for Best Actress and Best Ensemble.
In August 2011, Lisa DeCaro and Gail Montgomery were chosen by The Center for the Arts Evergreen as the 2011 Arts Person(s) of the Year!
In October 2011, EP will take "Parallel Lives" to the Army Europe One Act Festival, an international festival to be held at the Roadside Theater in Heidelberg, Germany. The production was chosen as the closing (non-competitive) showcase performance by the Festival's Chair after he had seen the performance at the National AACT Festival in Rochester.
Sixteen Wounded (John Moore, Denver Post, March 3, 2009)
The play is inescapably an "unlikely friendship," which, in theater-speak, is usually a nice euphemism for "forced," "unbelievable" or "eye-rolling." But while the starting point is pure contrivance, the ending is brutally, necessarily honest. With its vivid, sympathetic characters and strong production values, director Len Matheo has taken the Evergreen Players out of their comfort zone in order to bring comfort to audiences whose minds are open to a broader conversation on the caprice of love, the definition of family and the burden of identity.
Evergreen Players a Favorite at State Festival (June 19, 2005)
The Evergreen Players' production of Down the Road, the intense drama of a serial killer and the married couple who agree to write his biography, was awarded the People's Choice Award at the 2005 Colorado Community Theatre Coalition competition this year in Fort Morgan. Down the Road, which took second place overall, also received four All-State Awards: Scott Ogle for Best Director, Bruce and Gail Montgomery for Best Acting, and Peggy Stenmark for Best Set Design.
Evergreen Players Recognized With Award from Theater Educators Group (Kristin Andersen, January 5, 2005)
Evergreen Players received the "Community Theatre" award from Alliance for Colorado Theatre ACT Board member Tony Catanese. In presenting the award, Catanese concluded by saying, "After seeing numerous productions over the years and having had the good fortune to appear in one of them, I continue to be impressed with the high quality of the production values the Players consistently demonstrate and with the sense of community and support they provide for everyone who becomes involved with the organization.
In March 2019, John Davis was elected as a Fellow to the American Association of Community Theatre (AACT). This is quite an honor, with only a handful of theater professionals chosen every other year. "AACT Fellow" is bestowed for life upon members of AACT who, over a period of years, have made significant contributions to the idea and ideal of community theater. • In March 2018, Kathleen Davis, a long-time board member, received an outstanding volunteer award from the American Association of Community Theatre celebrating her 51 years of committed service to Evergreen Players. • Evergreen Players was nominated for 2015 Nonprofit of the Year by the Evergreen Chamber. • The cast of our 2015 summer production of "Forbidden Broadway" was nominated for Best Small Ensemble by BroadwayWorld.com. • "Apartment 3A" (March 2014) was selected to move on to the Colorado Theater Festival's regional competition